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TOP OF TABLE CLASH ENDS IN DRAW

AUCKLAND – Auckland City were unable to increase their lead in the NZFC  this week  after battling out a 1-1 draw in their top of the table clash with Team
Wellington.

Wellington got off to a flying start in front of a crowd of 800 when Wiremu Patrick finished off a slick move down the middle to blast home a right footed shot from outside the box.
Auckland was unable to capitalise on a stoppage time penalty at the end of the first half when Phil Imray produced a great stop to deny Keryn Jordan.

Auckland assumed dominance in the second half and their pressure on the Wellington goal culminated in an Eliezer Anello equaliser on 51 minutes. It stayed that way for the final
forty minutes and leaves Wellington one point behind Auckland with a game in hand.

Hakwes Bay United squandered a chance to keep pace with the top three when they conceded an 87th minute penalty to Waikato FC.

Hawkes Bay took the lead in the 18th minute after Greig Henslee after pounced on a failed Waikato clearance. Both team had good spells of possession and will be ruing missed chances
which could have turned the game either way.

Waikato was rewarded for their second half dominance when Stanley Waita went down in the box under an Ian Hogg challenge. Robert Gill stepped up to convert his sixth goal of the
season, and his fifth from the penalty spot.

Youngheart Manawatu won by the odd goal in five at home to Canterbury United to consolidate sixth spot, one behind Waikato.

Ian Robinson opened the scoring for the home side before Ryan Faichnie equalised for Canterbury just before half time. Robinson then put Manawatu back in front before Ian Sandbrook
made it 3-1.  Canterbury kept coming back and Rhodri Payne’s 77th minute goal created a nervous final 15 minutes for Shane Rufer’s side.

Waitakere United bounced back from their Club World Cup defeat in Japan to trounce Otago 4-0 at Fred Taylor Park.

The game remained scoreless until the 65th minute when Commins Menapi finished off a Graham Pearce cross at the far post. This opened the gate for Waitakere who went on to score
three more goals in twenty minutes through Menapi, Jake Butler and Daniel Koprivcic.

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